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Friday, July 6, 2018

Most Ohio Courts Have Responded to Gov. Kasich's Call For National Background Check Reporting Data, But Hundreds Have Yet to Respond

Posted By on Fri, Jul 6, 2018 at 11:32 AM

click to enlarge GAGE SKIDMORE, WIKIPEDIA
  • Gage Skidmore, Wikipedia

Hundreds of Ohio courts, including 87 of 88 courts of common pleas and 152 of 164 municipal and county courts, have provided information on their history with the national background check database to Governor John Kasich following executive order in April that sought the data as part of his broader bipartisan effort to improve Ohio’s gun laws.

The executive order urged courts to provide documentation on their use of the National Instant Criminal Background System, or NICS, and what barriers they’ve faced in adding information to the database.

Unfortunately, a total of 214 courts in 63 Ohio counties were listed as non-responsive. Some have provided partial information, according to the Associated Press, and many mayor's courts listed may simply no longer be in operation.

Ohio Supreme Court spokesman Ed Miller cautioned that not responding to Kasich’s survey is not the same as courts being non-compliant with NICS reporting requirements. He told the AP the vast majority of courts-of-record across the state are properly inputting data into the background check system. Cleveland muni court was among those that had failed, according to a report from earlier this year.

Karhlton Moore, executive director of the Ohio Office of Criminal Justice Services, said the administration was pleased overall with the level of response to the voluntary survey. He said results are being analyzed for a report due to Kasich on Aug. 1.

Kasich has been a vocal advocate for common sense gun laws, and the results of these self-evaluations are intended to assist with a series of changes to Ohio gun laws, including provisions to force stricter compliance with deadlines and penalties around entering data into the background check system.

The Ohio Legislature went on summer break last week before rapidly passing a large number of bills, but the bill containing those changes to gun control is tabled while they enjoy their seasonal recess.

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